Sports | Health
Gera is a city of sports
The roots of the sports city actually date back to the 19th century. Today, Gera has regionally and internationally a good reputation as a city of sports. Top athletes like the Olympic champion in bicycle racing, Olaf Ludwig and the Paralympics champions Birgit Pohl and Mario Oehme worked their way towards these successes in Gera during the recent years. In 1995 and 2005, the Olympic champions Olaf Ludwig and Heike Drechsler both received the honorary citizenship by their hometown Gera.
Typical and traditional sports in Gera, which are sponsored by intensive-training centres, are bicycle racing, boxing and speed skating. Furthermore, the city district Milbitz has one of the most beautiful and modern horse-riding centres in Germany that hosts national and international lucrative competitions in show jumping and dressage every year. In German championships many of the world’s best cyclists, riders, swimmers and speed skaters have already competed against each other in Gera.
About 15,000 of Gera’s citizens are doing exercise in 110 sports clubs; they have 29 city sports-parks, swimming baths and 39 different courts available. Examples are the renovated and very modern Hofwiesenbad swimming bath with a 50-meter long pool and the newly constructed speed-skating rink fitted to international requirements. In May 2004, the new 9.5-million-Euro worth sports hall Panndorfhalle was opened when, at the same time, the Hofwiesen park was designed. After being used as a flower hall for the horticulture show Bundesgartenschau (BUGA), the Sheddachhalle was re-constructed into another sports hall.
The city successively works on making several sports venues available not only to the sports clubs, but to the citizens now as well. This concerns the smaller pitch at the Stadion der Freundschaft and the mountain-biking route in the urban forest.
Sports and health are closely related. A part of the dense network of medical institutions in Gera are ambulatory health care and the hospital Waldklinikum (the second largest in Thüringen.) Our youngest citizens of Gera are taken care of in 42 children’s institutions.
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